Selling stocks

Say I want to sell my shares, however I have bought in at two different prices - $28 and $32

If I want to sell a small amount of shares for a quick profit, whilst keeping money in the share long-term, how do I sell my weakest position ($32) and keep my strongest ($28)?

Many thanks x

It doesn’t work like that.

If the shares are in the same company then the price you paid each time gets averaged out. So technically you now paid $30 per share.


Thank you very much, that makes sense.

So my average share price as shown in the app is used when selling shares?


Yep, so any profit % calculated uses the average share price you paid.

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Also, please ensure you check the charts from other providers as the FREETRADE ones are delayed considerably and you won’t sell for the shown price :slight_smile:


If you have bought shares at different prices, the average is displayed and the % change relates to that.
When you sell however, the FreeTrade app does not keep that average as you purchase price.
It sells your shares in chronological order of when they were bought.
So after your sale, your average buy in of your remaining shares will have altered. And so your % gain or loss will also have changed.

The actual amount you have invested and how much your shares are worth has not changed, it’s just a nuance of how the information is displayed.


That is another question, I use other apps and resources for live prices - but if I buy or sell we don’t actually know what price they are being bought at?

The answers are correct, but it depends if your talking about an ISA or GIA?

Because where there is a difference it only applies to the GIA and how tax is calculated.

Freetrade don’t offer a quote feature at the moment like HL does. But lives prices are just as indicative as delayed prices they’re just more up to date. You always get the best price at the time

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Okay, thank you.

So for my example, if I fist bought in at $28 and then later at $32 that makes my average price $30.
However if after selling, Freetrade sells my last purchase ($32) first and so my average share price reduces?

Whatever you bought first will be the one they will sell. So if it’s at the lowest price, automatically your average price will go up. But if it was the highest value, then its average price will fall.

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I see, that’s a shame. So better of waiting before taking quick profits?

Your average depends on both the price and the number of shares bought at each price.
In your example if you bought the same number of shares at each price then the average is $30.
If however you bought say 3 shares at $28 and 1 share at $32 then the average is $29.

Also if you bought the $28 share first then they would be sold first, so your average price paid of your remaining shares will go up as more of them will be at $32

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This only applies for GIAs in the first 30 days of a stock being bought and sold. After 30 days all trades of the same asset are considered a single pot and treated as such. What prices you bought at and what gets sold first doesn’t matter.

Same with trades within the same day, these trades are treated as one trade.

In an ISA it makes no difference at all, since the only reason trades are treated differently at all is for tax purposes not for their potential gain or loss value. And tax doesn’t apply in an ISA.

Stocks of the same company are identical, which ones are sold makes no difference to the average value of your stock.

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Thank you pal, top explanation that! Holding seems the better option at the moment then!

Do other apps offer the ability to sell different positions or is it universal that its done on average price?

When you execute the order at any given time, the real actual price will be taken into account. So today even though at 12:34pm price for x share was £14.44 on freetrade, when i sold it took into account real price for that time and that price was £14.68 . Which was the live price . Hope this makes sense. Just execute orders based on live price charts ( whatever provider you use)

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If you have a GIA the CGT rules apply and you’ll need to track your sales to determine how to calculate your CGT.

There is no option that I’m aware of to sell specific blocks of stocks in the UK as it makes no difference to how CGT must be calculated.

If you brought stock A six’s months ago and a week ago and tried to sell the batch of stock A from six months ago, regardless of achieving this you would have to calculate CGT as if you sold the week old stock first for example.

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Thank you mate, going to have to research those abbreviations!

Gia is general investment account
Cgt is capital gains tax
Uk is united kingdom


Thank you bud, GIA makes sense. Think with my sub $100 investments I should be safe from any CGT unless I turn out to be an investing genius!

The UK abbreviation is one I can safely say I had on lock already!

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